Bollywood on the Rideau! It happens on June 20 at TD Ottawa Jazz Festival!

TD Ottawa Jazz Festival’s opening night, which takes place Friday, June 20 on the main stage inside Confederation Park to feature Bollywood superstar, Richa Sharma.

Thanks to funding from the Government of Ontario, Opening Night will showcase a Bollywood Extravaganza with Jaffa Road kicking off the evening on the main stage at 6pm, followed by Autorickshaw at the new Laurier Avenue Canadian Music Stage at 7:30pm. 

The evening will be highlighted by Indian superstar playback singer Richa Sharma – one of the top five selling artists in India. Her voice is one of the country’s most recognizable and can be heard in such Bollywood blockbusters at Taal , Kal Ho Naa Ho, Umrao Jaan, and My Name is Khan. Hear the hits ofBollywood cinema in the park under the stars on June 20!

Bollywood actors, are regarded as both great actors and dancers. The tradition has created an industry of music makers who supply music for the actors to lip-synch with. The singers that are actually singing are known as playback singers. Many people love the music and they recognize the talent behind the screen. Some playback singers have become stars in their own right. Richa Sharma is one of these stars. 

After Sharma’s Main Stage show, head to the nearby Marion Dewar Plaza to see DJ Rekha perform in the OLG After Dark Series at 10:30 pm. The British-born, New York City-based DJ is also a curator, record label owner and educator. Called the “Ambassador of Bhangra” by the New York Times and named one of the most influential South Asians by Newsweek, Rekha is among the first DJs to merge classic bhangra and Bollywood sounds into the language of contemporary electronic dance music.  

“When we started looking at having a Bollywood theme for our opening night, DJ Rekha’s name came up quickly from all kinds of sources,” says Ottawa Jazz Festival Programmer, Petr Cancura. “DJ Rekha — born Rekha Malhotra — has a love of hip-hop and bhangra and she has made a creative blend of music that drives the art form forward, yet it always conscious of the dancers,” he says. “Her music goes over like hot cakes and she has a knack for shaping the life of a party through music.”

Why Bollywood? Cancura took up this question in recent blog posts on the TD Ottawa Jazz Festival site. He says the music has more in common with jazz than one might think.”These traditions rely heavily on the art of improvising, but with a different vocabulary, phrasing and aesthetic,” he says. “As a jazz fan, you can expect rhythmic complexity and exciting interplay.”

For a full lineup of the 34th edition of the TD Ottawa Jazz Festival, visit http://ottawajazz.wpengine.com/lineup/.

For more information, contact Suki Lee, Inbox Communications: 416-529-7979 or inbox@inboxcommunications.com